Disclosure: The Honest Kitchen is a sponsor of GoPetFriendly.com, much to the droolight of Ty and Buster. We were sent a free bag of Love to test and did not receive any payment for this review. The opinions expressed here are my honest assessment of the product based on my personal experience using it.
The Honest Kitchen has created a brand new dog food formula and named it Love. With ingredients like dehydrated hormone-free beef, sweet potatoes, organic coconut, cranberries, pumpkin, and honey, it was not a big surprise to me that Ty and Buster loved it.
And that got me to thinking … the boys have been eating the Force formula for nearly two years. I know they still like it because Buster creates a puddle of drool twice a day when I mix it up, and Ty can’t hold a “sit” to save his life! But, would they like one of the other formulas better? It was time for a taste test …
We had samples of six of The Honest Kitchen’s formulas, so we pulled them out and set up the experiment. Apparently Ty thinks they’re also good dry, because he couldn’t even wait until we mixed in the water!
We added the warm water, stirred them up, and gave each dog a turn.
Release the hound … uhhh, Shepherd!
Buster was hilarious … being his usual goof-ball self, he bounced from bowl to bowl. Love, Thrive, Love, Keen, Love, Thrive, Verve, Force, Keen, Force, Keen, Force, Embark, Verve, Love, Verve.
Ty was only slightly more focused in his approach.
Love, Thrive, Verve, Love, Keen, Force, Embark, Force, Embark, Love, Keen, Thrive.
He left a path of destruction in his wake.
We determined each dogs’ favorite food by how many times they had to return to the bowl to finish the sample. If they really liked the food, they ate more of it before moving on to another – right? Based on our unscientific approach, here are the results:
It was interesting to see Love come in last, because when we fed it to the dogs by itself they gobbled it up and *loved* it. We were glad to see Embark and Force score so well with both boys, since both of those formulas are grain- and gluten-free.
But, the dogs weren’t the only ones sniffing! Rod and I did a smell test to see which of the aromas we preferred – after all, if you’re going to mix up your dogs’ food twice a day, you might as well enjoy it. With a scent reminiscent of Thanksgiving dinner, Force won our competition followed by Keen and Embark.
After all the testing, we’ve decided to stick with Force as the boys’ primary diet and get a box of Embark occasionally to keep things interesting. Force has fewer calories per serving than Embark, which will help Ty keep his girlish figure, and it’s priced slightly less at $78 per 10lb box. We also tried Zeal, The Honest Kitchen’s fish-based formula, a while back. Though we didn’t have samples to include in the taste test, it would be another option for the boys. Zeal, is also grain- and gluten-free, has the fewest calories per serving, and has more protein than either Force or Embark – but it’s pricier at $108 per 10lb box.
The Honest Kitchen’s dehydrated dog food is perfect for our mobile lifestyle. We usually buy eight 10lb boxes of Force at a time, which makes us eligible for a bulk discount and free shipping. Each 10lb box makes 43 pounds of food, so with two cases on board we’re packing a whopping 344 pounds of dog food! I also love that we can switch the dogs between The Honest Kitchen’s formulas with no gastrointestinal upset. We picked up a box of Embark a week ago, and neither of the boys had any problem switching without the usual “transition protocol” recommended when changing to a different diet. Having that extra flexibility makes our pet travel life a little easier.
Ty wants you to know that if you’d like him to taste-test your dog’s food, he’d be happy to provide his services. He thinks he may have finally found his calling.
Have you ever done a dog food taste test with your pooch? Would the results impact your decision in what food to feed them?
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